NBA 2018-19: 10 centres who are viable 3-point shooters
The modern NBA has changed basketball from the norm of the past 30-40 years on the offensive end in one distinguishable way - the rise of the 3-point shot. The best teams in the league today are the ones that are able to generate the best looks from range while simultaneously being able to run opposition shooters off the 23-foot line.
In such a day and age, post play is increasingly being discarded by more and more teams in favour of the more efficient 3-point shot, although bigs are still required to have the ability to bang down low.
The average big man of today's NBA is, however, a better offensive player than his predecessors, and there is a multitude of centres and power forwards with a smooth shooting stroke from the perimeter. For the purposes of this article, we are looking at players who are averaging nearly 1 made 3-pointer on a sizeable sample and league-average efficiency, and here goes the list:
#1 Brook Lopez
The biggest beneficiary of Mike Budenholzer's trigger-happy, 3-pointer-heavy offence has been Brook Lopez. Teams' inability to send centres out to defend and close down perimeter shooting means Lopez is routinely found open from downtown. Through 13 games of the season, Lopez is ranked 5th among all players in 3-pointers made, with 39 converted attempts out of 93.
Last night, in a win over fellow early hits Denver Nuggets, Lopez shot 8-of-13 from downtown - a career high in makes. Both teams have strong frontcourt players, and Lopez fits well with the Bucks' swingmen. Many of his teammates are capable off-the-dribble creators, and he is a pretty good pick-and-pop option from the elbow region out till 28 feet - as you can see below:
Lopez will undoubtedly be a factor in the playoffs next summer.